Hello dear family!
I can't believe Jemma is five years old! Time flies by so fast! It sounds like she had a great birthday party though. You guys did a great job! Jemma sounded really excited about her presents and the games that you played.
We had an incredible week this week! We have been trying so hard to find new investigators and the Lord has blessed us immensely with four new investigators this week! As always its going to take a lot of work, but they need the gospel so much in their lives we will do whatever it takes to help them.
The biggest miracle this week was Bonnie. Bonnie is fifteen and came to our english class for the first time several weeks ago. Later that week we were calling all the new students we had who said they would be willing to meet with the missionaries...Bonnie was one of them. That phone call was one of the easiest adds I have ever had. We set up with her for the next week, but she ended up having to cancel, so we set up a different time...which ended up being a typhoon day so that was canceled as well. Finally after a couple of weeks we got to meet with her. We were actually on exchanges so I was here in Beiqu with Sister Parkinson and Sister Schultz was in Taiping. We asked her about her background and why she was willing to meet with the missionaries. All of the questions we asked pertaining to what she wanted to learn, why she was meeting with us etc received a slight shrug and a muttered, "I don't know." But when we started talking about how the gospel will help her and how much God loves her she just beamed. She loved it! We invited her to start praying and asked her to go home and make sure her mom was okay with her meeting with us.
Later that night (when Sister Schultz was back) we got a call around ten pm. Sister Schultz answered and a little confused told me whoever it was was saying her mom said she could meet with us. It was Bonnie.
Then Sunday afternoon while we were sitting in ward correlation meeting she called us again. She said her teacher was sick and class was canceled so she could come to church! We met her as she walked in the door and she stayed for the next two hours. It was a huge miracle! She is so cute and I can't wait to she where she goes in the next couple of weeks.
Second miracle of the week: So this week we went on exchanges. I stayed and led the area here in Beiqu, and I was a little nervous. I've only been here for three weeks now and I still don't know a lot of the people. I was really nervous about not having a very good exchange because we didn't have many lessons set up and I had no idea where the places were that we had planned to go. We went out after dinner to find a member referral we were given earlier in the week only to find them not home and it starting to rain outside. We were a little short on time to make it back to the church for the FHE the missionaries hold every week so we biked as fast as we could back to the church. When we started our way back it was just sprinkling so we didn't worry about putting our rain coats on. Unfortunately only five minutes away from the church it started pouring and Sister Parkinson and I got soaked! We finally got into the church and were greeted by the elders who said we had an investigator inside. We ran to the bathroom to ring out our skirts and dry off a little bit then went to FHE. For most of FHE I was sitting next to this 17 year old girl wracking my brain to remember where I saw her. After FHE was over I talked to her a little more and realized that Sister Schultz and I had contacted her about a week earlier while she was waiting at a cross walk and we were stopped at a red light. She didn't sound interested so we gave her an english class tract and wrote our phone number on the back. She didn't know about our FHE, but showed up at the church and was able to attend and was willing to set up another meeting with us for this next week.
Miracle #3: We have another english student named Yo-Yo ,who has been coming to english forever and the sisters have been trying to set up with her for months, but she always said she didn't have time. Thursday night as we were parking our bikes to go tracting for the rest of the night Yo-Yo called us and asked us to meet her at the McDonalds. We changed plans and ran over to meet with her. She wanted us to teach her how to pray so she could volunteer in english class. It was a little frustrating because she was treating prayer as something you recite rather than something that comes from the heart. We kept trying to explain, but she just didn't get it. She wanted to write down examples and record us praying, but we told her we didn't feel comfortable with that. We tried our hardest, but still left the McDonald's a little frustrated and not very confident in her motives to learn. BUT....she showed up to the last hour of church this Sunday! She was stood up by a friend so she drove to church and said it helped her feel a lot better.
I could probably think of other miracles, but those are the big ones. We got our apartment pretty much clean, and got all of the elder's things moved out. It is really nice and feels so much better to have a clean apartment.
We also got to go down to Zhanghua because a young women down there was finally able to get baptized. She has been an investigator for over a year, but her mom wouldn't let her get baptized. Finally about a month ago she asked again and got permission to be baptized. Because she has been an investigator for so long she had a ton of missionaries who taught her! Sister Schultz started her mission there. It was incredible and was so full of the spirit.
While there I was also able to run into some long lost friends. While we were waiting at the bus station I heard someone behind me say "Sister Fernley do you remember me?" I turned around and saw one of the young men from Nantou who was also going to the baptism! He said his whole family was going to be there as well. They used to invite all the missionaries over for birthdays and holidays and were always really good to us. They were also the family involved in the chicken feet fiasco. Then as I walked into the door of the church I heard someone yell "Sister Fernley!" (in english) and saw someone running towards me. It was Enya! She used to help us with investigator lessons while she was going to school in Nantou. She just got back from a study abroad in Australia. I love her so much! She is such a strong young women! I couldn't believe she remembered me, but it was so good to see her! THEN I went upstairs and saw my trainer! Sister Anderson moved to that area right after we trained. I haven't seen her since then and now she is going home this move call! It was so good to see her again. We were both super excited.
Seeing everyone reminded me off all the incredible people I have met here and how much I love the people of Taiwan.
Anyway I've talked long enough and I am almost out of time. I love you all. I love this work. I love these people. I love this language. I love being a missionary!
Have an incredible week! There's another miracle just around the corner!
With all my love,